How to get sales leads before you start overseas expansion

Expanding into new markets overseas can be lucrative, but also daunting. How can you confidently expand abroad without any business leads? We explain how to grab sales leads before you set up overseas.

Before your business can conquer the world, make sure you have sales leads in place

Before your business can conquer the world, make sure you have sales leads in place

So you have a product/service which you know would appeal to customers overseas, but how do you gauge demand, generate business leads and grab the international sales you need without committing funds needed to set up an overseas operation?

Pre-qualifying leads is crucial for converting leads to business, especially when pursuing international sales. The cost of failure is simply too great, so it is critical that you build a rapport with genuine buyers and gauge real interest before you commit.

There are three ways to tackle sales when thinking about overseas expansion:

Wing it
The “build it and they will come” approach is more common than you think. Businesses flush with success often make rash decisions by assuming their offering will resonate around the globe.  There’s more to establishing a healthy sales pipeline than just guessing supply and demand, and although a few businesses may be lucky and hit gold without much pre-planning, more will fail and find themselves footing a large bill in the process.

Employ locally
Sourcing a lead generation specialist in your target market of choice is preferable to winging it but still leads to problems. How do you source such a person overseas? This act alone comes with the same problems you’ll have selling overseas such as culture and language barriers. Accurate communication is crucial when outsourcing some or all of your business development, so the moment you add another layer of complexity, the more difficult it becomes.

Find an international telemarketing specialist
The advantage of working with a supplier from your home territory is that the cultural and language barriers are removed. For example, The Call Business is a UK business which understands the challenges of running a UK business. We employ foreign language speakers, sometimes based in the UK, others in their home territories, to perform the telemarketing and relationship building element. This gives you the best of both worlds: you can speak to us in your native language, we translate your brand offering and create a strategy based on the territory you are building in, then we leave native speakers to actually run the campaigns.

Remember, different cultures offer different buying signals – so what in one language may seem like a definite “yes” may, in reality, be a polite “no” in another tongue. Native speakers will naturally overcome these problems, and if briefed and managed correctly by an international telemarketing specialist, will represent your business in the best way, generating business leads and laying the foundation for your overseas business.